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Calendar of Events

Music in Internment

24 Sun Feb 2013

Music in Internment

Music in Internment

This live musical performance connects audiences to the internment of “enemy aliens” in England and Canada during the Second World War. In May 1940, the British government began to intern all male Germans and Austrians between the ages of 16 and 60, including Jewish refugees from Nazism. Behind barbed wire in England – and later in Canada, where 2,300 were deported to in July 1940 – academics, writers, artists and composers established a vibrant cultural life, boosting the spirits and morale of their fellow internees.

Featuring The Huyton Suite by Austrian Jewish composer Hans Gál and selections from What a Life! and Partita by German Jewish composer Franz Reizenstein, the performance brings to life the music composed and performed in the British internment camps. The contemplative evening finishes with a song written by Fritz Grundland, later known as Freddy Grant, during his internment in Canada. This enhanced concert experience includes narration and film presented with the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre.

Music in Internment features classical violinists Mark Lupin (international soloist and former student of Heifetz), Angela Cavadas (Vancouver Opera), violist Sarah Kwok (DMA candidate at UBC), cellist Stefan Hintersteininger (Aventa Ensemble, Sonic Boom), pianist Charlotte Hale (UVic faculty), clarinettist Connie Gitlin (Manitoba Chamber Orchestra principal clarinet), vocalist Stephen Aberle, and flautist Suzanne Snizek.

The performance enlivens the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre’s acclaimed exhibit, Enemy Aliens: The Internment of Jewish Refugees in Canada, 1940-1943, on view at the VHEC through June 2013. Through eyewitness testimony and artifacts, this exhibit illustrates a little-known chapter in Canadian history and a bittersweet story of survival during the Holocaust.

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